In our efforts to be religious, we’ve missed the mark of embracing people with the love of Jesus. We’re so caught up in disproving other religions and proving that Christianity is the way, we forget that we’re actually dealing with people. We see another stat to add to our conversion data chart instead of seeing a person with actual needs, including the need for Jesus’ rescue.
Ephesians 4:1-2 says, “Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”
Paul says we ought to follow the example of God and walk as Jesus did. In verse 2, Paul reminds the Ephesian church that Christ loved us to death. Jesus “gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” Meaning to say, that Jesus’ love had legs. His love had action. He wasn’t concerned with making sure “religion” was followed to a “T.” In fact, Jesus was uprooting “religion” as everyone knew it to be and “showing” what religion ought to be, in love. Paul also mentions that Jesus’ selfless act was a fragrant offering. In short, he means to say that Jesus’ work and service for us was sweet. It was a beautiful act of rescue that no one could argue with its purity.
And we ought to follow suit.
And so, in the verses that follow, Paul gives some input as to how we ought to live that’ll reflect Christ in us. At the core, it’s about living in obedience because living in disobedience will produce “darkness.” What it boils down to is, not necessarily avoiding the bad, but focusing on living as Christ did, which had everyone else’s best interest in mind. Because what will begin to happen, as we live in love and allow His Spirit to live and breathe in us, we won’t have time to exercise that which is opposite to God’s call.
We’ll be focused on Him and the things of Him that our lives will begin to change from the inside out.
How about you? Thoughts?